President Trump's proposal to significantly cut funding for domestic spending programs would include critical federal health agencies, including the Environmental Protection Agency and agencies within the Department of Health and Human Services (HHS). In response, Harold P. Wimmer, National President and CEO of the American Lung Association, issued the following statement:
"Slashing funding for programs that are proven to save lives is a disastrous strategy; cuts to key lung health programs at EPA and HHS make Americans less secure and less protected from known health threats such as the next influenza pandemic and air pollution. Our nation's scientists and doctors will be less likely to find cures and better treatments for the millions of Americans with lung cancer, COPD and asthma.
"The extensive cuts put forward by the Trump Administration should be rejected out of hand, as they would significantly weaken lung health protections. Significant cuts to federal public health and biomedical infrastructure would mean more lives affected by, and lost to lung diseases.
"The current federal budget supports core programs that protect the health of Americans. Draconian cuts to EPA would dramatically weaken our nation's ability to clean up air pollution under the Clean Air Act; a law that has saved hundreds of thousands of lives over the past four decades. Cuts to HHS would significantly reduce researchers' ability to find better treatments and cures for lung cancer and other lung diseases, and would further overwhelm our already over-burdened public health infrastructure.
"The American Lung Association calls on Congress to work across party lines to enact long-term federal spending plans via a balanced approach that provides much-needed resources to health programs and other non-defense discretionary accounts."
About the American Lung Association
The American Lung Association is the leading organization working to save lives by improving lung health and preventing lung disease through education, advocacy and research. The work of the American Lung Association is focused on four strategic imperatives: to defeat lung cancer; to champion clean air for all; to improve the quality of life for those with lung disease and their families; and to create a tobacco-free future. For more information about the American Lung Association, a holder of the coveted 4-star rating from Charity Navigator and a Gold-Level GuideStar Member, or to support the work it does, call 1-800-LUNGUSA (1-800-586-4872) or visit: Lung.org.